Water Profile Settings
The Global Settings panel contains global water settings that do not have immediately to do with the water shader itself.
|Enable GPU Instancing||Toggles GPU Instancing on the Water Material in the scene.|
|Infinite Mode||When enabled, the water mesh will follow the player around, so that there is the illusion of an infinite ocean around the player. The water effects like waves etc. are calculated in world space, so the player normally would not notice that the water plane is following the camera.|
If you need the water plane to stay in place, you can deactivate this option. If you need a large ocean still, note that you can exchange the mesh on the water surface object with any other mesh of your liking, e.g. you can exchange it with a simple, very large plane.
|Water Prefab||The Prefab that is spawned for the water surface in the scene when creating water.|
|Transition FX Prefab||A Prefab that is spawned above the water surface to create a transition effect from over- to underwater.|
The water surface can reflect the surrounding scene which adds to the believability of the water effect. Calculating Reflections costs performance, but there are various reflection systems that help you to fine tune the reflection behaviour to find the best "looks vs. performance" trade-off for your scene.
The reflection image on the water surface is calculated by a hidden camera in the scene, so a lot of the following options have to do with how this reflection image is being generated.
|Enable Reflections||Toggles the Water Reflections on and off altogether.|
|Auto Refresh||Per default, the camera reflections will only update when the camera is moving to preserve performance. This is enough for most cases as usually the camera is usually moving almost always if the user can freely control the camera.|
However if you are using a fixed camera, or you notice issues e.g. with moving objects not being updated frequently enough in the reflections, you can set up additional options here for automatically refreshing the reflection image.
|Auto Update Mode||Choose between 3 different modes for automatically updating the camera:|
Interval - Camera will be updated at a fixed Interval
Scene Conditions- Camera will be updated if certain aspects of the scene such as lighting change.
When selecting "Interval" you can enter a Refresh Rate in seconds. If you uncheck the box for Ignore Scene Conditions, Gaia will additionally check for the Scene Conditions when in Interval mode - so you would get both updates at the fixed interval, but also when scene conditions change.
|Allow MSAA||Allows Multi-Sample Anti-Aliasing on the Reflection Camera.|
|Enable HDR||Toggles HDR Rendering on the Reflection Camera|
|Disable Pixel Lights||Disables per-pixel Lights on the Reflection Camera|
|Enable Height Feature||Allows you to disable reflections as soon as the player reaches a certain height in the scene - when the player is higher up and therefore further away from the water surface, usually rendering reflections is not a priority anymore.|
|Enable Custom Distance||Allows you to either set a certain culling distance for the reflection calculations - OR- set a distance per rendering layer ("Enable Multi Layer Distance") at which the reflection is not calculated anymore.|
The latter is very attractive if you set up your assets according to their size on different layers, as this allows you to cull small objects like stones very early, while big objects like houses are displayed at a higher distance in the reflection image.
|Reflection Resolution||Resolution / Quality of the Reflection image. The resolution is directly proportional to the performance impact.|
|Clip Plane Offset||Creates a vertical offset for the reflection image|
|Reflected Layers||Layers that are incorporated in the reflection image. Turn off anything in here that does not need to be displayed in the reflection to save performance.|
This panel holds settings related to the underwater FX (Visual effects to give the impression the camera is inside a body of water)
Please Note: Not all of these settings work across each rendering pipeline (yet). We will further refine these underwater effects in future updates of Gaia.
|Use Caustics||Enables Caustics (The light refractions of the "moving" water surface)|
This effect is realized as an animated cookie texture on the directional light in the scene that is activated as soon as the camera goes under the water surface.
|Main Caustic Light||The main directional light of the scene which the caustics cookie texture is applied to.|
|Caustic Frames per Second||Animation Speed for the Caustics Effect|
|Caustics Size||(Tiling) Size of the Caustics Effect|
|Underwater Particles Prefab||The Prefab that is used to play back the underwater Particle FX|
|Underwater Horizon Prefab||A set of underwater "walls" that move with the player to prevent visual issues with fog in the distance.|
|Enable Underwater Effects||Toggles the underwater effects altogether.|
|Enable Underwater Post FX||Toggles the underwater post processing effects.|
|Enable Underwater Fog||Toggles the underwater "fog" that is used to simulate the reduced vision range when being under water.|
|Enable Underwater Particles||Toggles the floaty underwater particles.|
Mesh Quality Settings
Per default Gaia will create a water mesh for you. In this panel you can control the size, shape and quality of this mesh.
Please Note: The mesh quality is only relevant for the waves of the water shader. If you do not intend to have larger waves you can keep the quality low, or even replace the generated mesh with a flat plane to save performance.
|Water Mesh Quality||Preset values for the water mesh quality. The "Custom" setting allows you to set your own values.|
|Mesh Type||Circle or Square mesh shape.|
|Custom Mesh Quality||A value that controls the amount of vertices used in the mesh generation. Higher value = more vertices / polygons|
|Water Size||Size of the mesh in meters..|
|Poly Count Generated||Read-only value for the number of generated polygons - just a pointer how "heavy" the generated mesh is with the given settings.|